Class Warfare Blog

April 8, 2013

The Cloture Vote IS the Background Check Vote

Mitch McConnell and a band of Republican stalwarts (the usual sort: Cruz, Paul, etc.) are threatening to filibuster the bill in the Senate requiring universal background checks for gun buyers. Realize that this is a purely political move, not one of principle. Consider this: McConnell and some of the others are up for re-election in 2014. The campaigns will begin this fall. None of these guys want to vote against a background check bill. Here’s why.

Universal background checks for gun buyers has 92% approval in the polls. Nothing gets 92% approval, nothing . . . except this. And a vote against universal background checks is a vote against preventing criminals, mentally deficient citizens, wife beaters, people with restraining orders, etc. from getting guns. A vote against says loud and clear that you think that criminals, mentally deficient citizens, wife beaters, people with restraining orders, etc. should have access to all the guns they need.

Since the NRA will be very, very displeased if they vote for that bill, and their constituents won’t have enough time to forget they voted that way, then there can be no vote at all. Hence the filibuster.

The Cloture Vote IS the Background Check Vote
So, here is what we do. We pay close attention to the cloture vote. A cloture vote is a vote to end debate and bring the bill itself to a vote. When a bill is filibustered, as McConnell and his cronies intend doing, a super majority of 60 votes is needed to end debate. (One possible filibuster reform was to end filibusters of such votes, only allowing them on the bills themselves, but the Democrats couldn’t do that to the poor Senate’s proud traditions.)

If debate cannot be ended then the bill is effectively tabled and never is voted on, that is none of those Republican Senators have to piss off either their constituents or the NRA.

But as far as I am concerned, if either of my Senators votes against the cloture vote, I will consider it the same as voting against universal background checks. They can have their own little cute rules and I can have mine.

Let your Senators know that if they vote against the cloture, you will consider it the same as a vote against universal background checks. And all of their mealy mouthed excuses (“It was a bad bill.” “We had a much better bill in mind.”) will be ignored.

On this I am a one issue voter.

 

 

 

 

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2 Comments »

  1. Good point Stephen. Something I’m sure most constituents are unaware of.

    Comment by lbwoodgate — April 9, 2013 @ 7:01 am | Reply


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